On Reuters mobile journalism kit

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Am at an Online News Association event at Reuters, looking at their mobile journalism kit. It’s very exciting, being portable, non-intrusive and cheap(ish), based as it is on the Nokia N95 (5 megapixel camera, 3.5G, wifi). Nokia have been involved in its implementation and it comes with a Bluetooth keyboard and Sony digital mic. It’s been used in places as far afield as Afghanistan.

My verdict: promising area for future journalism – especially if it’s easy to use and cheap – but the examples we saw just did not cut it in quality terms, especially with regard to lighting and shake. To be fair, it’s all still in the experimental phase.

Judge for yourselves at www.reutersmojo.com.

(filed from my Nokia E61)

Update: Here’s a picture of said kit, showing: tripod; Nokia N95; Bluetooth keyboard; Sony digital mic; and solar charger.

Reuters mobile journalism kit 2007

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5 Comments

Filed under Journalism, newmedia, ONA, Technology

5 responses to “On Reuters mobile journalism kit

  1. Look at it from three viewpoints:

    1) for sending text only it’s a great way of doing it -especially if there is a way for the journalist to dial straight in to their newspaper copy service and it isn’t requiring wifi for a connection

    2) For audio it’s OK, not great but as a back of audio recorder for interviews it would do

    3) Not great for video just now but how many times would a reporter have killed to have had some form of video/audio record of a meeting and this could have done it without it looking too obvious?

    Also, as you point out, early days, but for a lot of instances, having something – as the N95 gives – is better than nothing.

    I still don’t think it’s fair to compare the N95 with an iPhone though: two totally different beasts.

  2. souralba

    Craig, I think that what Reuters are doing is definitely a step in the right direction. And, given the economic realities about to hit journalism, it’s going to be the future for videojournalism in most organisations.

    The answer will lie not with specific devices but in combining the functions of video, audio, editing, typing, memory and data transfer, using whatever technology you can afford.

  3. Yeah, as you say, budget will be the defining factor in a lot of this – that and finding reporters skilled enough to pull it off. The ones who are able to film and then also write a good piece that stands alone from the audio and video will do well.

    The sooner we all get video and picture taking glasses like Spider Jerusalem had in the series Transmetropolitan the better 🙂

    Surprised at the solar power add-on though. I would have thought a freeplay-style winding device would have been better. Ah well maybe in v2.0 (and having said that, reading the post here cemented for me the decision to go and get a N95)

  4. Pingback: Nokia tests “Mojo” in South Africa | PhoneReport v2.0

  5. Pingback: | Jodie's blog

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